Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Mixed results at Nationals in Coffs Harbour

Tasmania’s boys’ under-14 team won its opening match at the national championships in Coffs Harbour today, beating Victoria Country 1-0 through a free-kick by Paul Stevens.

“We were very competitive,” said Tasmania’s coach, Dale Itchins.

“All the country teams are very polished, as are the metropolitan teams.

“We were very good and we made minimal substitutions.

“You’re only allowed three substitutes in 50 minutes. A fourth player misses out and you can substitute your keeper if you want to.

“We made three subs, but over a very staggered time. It’s not interchange so you’re not on and off wasting time.

“In the first 20 minutes, we probably could have been two or three in front as we had some great opportunities.

“We probably lost a bit in the last 7 or 8 minutes. We dropped a bit deeper in that time and we invited them to run at us a little bit, but then we wanted to get our wide guys back out wide rather than in.

“The 4-3-3 system demands that your two wide guys stay wide - start wide and come in, but don’t start inside and go out, and that got a bit shallow.

“The heat was a factor for us, and it was 0-0 at half-time. We didn’t make any changes at half-time, but made a couple later and the changes refreshed us a little bit.

“We got a free-kick probably about 22 yards out and it was a great strike, a great finish.

“They hit the crossbar, so it could have been 2-2 or 3-3 if everyone had taken their opportunities, but we were pleased to get a result.

“We’re not here for the result really at all. But, that’s what people judge you on, unfortunately.

“It’s tough tomorrow. We have two games tomorrow, with an 8.30am kick-off and a 1.15pm against Queensland Country and Capital Football. So, it’ll be two tough games tomorrow.

“They’re all good polished sides. Queensland got beaten 2-0 by Capital Football today.

“But, we’ve got to make changes tomorrow, mainly because you’ve got to play every player a minimum time of 125 minutes out of 250, so you’ve got to rotate people to get time up.

“We’ll change keepers and we might make three or four other changes tomorrow but that disrupts things, but you’ve got to do it. You can’t pick the same eleven.

“But, you’ve got to do it. They’ll come down in the third or fourth game and they’ll challenge you and they’ll deduct points if you don’t get their time up. That disrupts the flow because you can’t pick the same eleven.

“It doesn’t affect us a great deal because we haven’t got a best eleven. We’ve got a good 14 or 15 before we start to get affected.”

The Tasmanian Under-15s lost 1-0 to Queensland Country and 2-1 to Northern Territory.

“It’s been a hard day at the office today,” said Tasmania’s Under-15 team coach, Gary Slicer.

“The boys started off the tournament against Queensland Country this morning in extremely hot conditions and they went really well. They were extremely unlucky and, unfortunately, went down 1-0.

“They backed up this afternoon with a 4.30 kick-off against Northern Territory and we went ahead 1-0 at half-time, but in the second half they got two quick goals and that was the end of that.

“It was a tough game for them. Chris McDonald scored for us in the first half, when we had all the possession and were all over them.

“In the second half we lost a bit of shape and concentration in what were very difficult conditions. It’s been 14 degrees in Hobart for the last few weeks and it was 27 degrees here today.”

The Under-15s play New South Wales Country tomorrow.


Anonymous said...

have they changed the system so that there isa strong pool of metro teams and and weaker pool with country and Nt and Tas teams??
It's a shame if that is the case

surf's up said...

With respect to everyone in Nth NSW, these are pretty decent results given that there are no TIS players or Morton SS boys in the squads so potentially they are a bit shy of being Tassie's best U14's and 15's.

Anonymous said...

We are led to believe that a draw is conducted for these national championships.Funny though that apart from 1 side that the under
15's play (Qld Metro) all other oposition are country regions or NT.I think that confirms that Tas is regarded as country (presume as far as playing standard is concerned). Shame that our best are not played against other state's best , as used to be the case many years ago.Having said that though, thi system obviously offers players from country areas an opportunity to participate also.Would be interesting to see results if the states played the states without the country sides ????